Focus area: Agriculture and Machinery

In this focus area, we have a general goal of contributing to the profitable development of Swedish agriculture, both conventional and organic. Important success factors are increased production and better utilisation of production aids supplied within both plant cultivation and animal products production.

Specific priorities 2017

Ahead of this year's call for proposals, we are particularly interested in projects that can develop plant breeding, seed growing and seed production, plus projects that can make the use of domestic feed raw materials more efficient and reduce the content of cadmium and other undesired substances in grain.

Sustainable intensification of Swedish plant cultivation

There is a big potential to increase production of grain and other crops in Sweden.  To be successful, cost efficiency is vital throughout the entire production and processing chain, plus a more targeted cultivation oriented to the right quality at the right price. Our goal is to be able to increase production without any negative environment impact. As such, knowledge of how best to preserve and recreate biodiversity and how to minimise leakage of crop nutrition and crop protection products. 

Ahead of this year's call for proposals, we are particularly interested in projects that can develop plant breeding, seed growing and seed production. Within plant breeding, we envisage a big potential to develop systems for genomic selection. The technology is very effective and is already being used by plant breeders in oats and shortly also in autumn wheat. We now see spring wheat as the next prioritised research area. At this moment, Swedish seed production is being developed very favourably but this could be further enhanced by investments in quick methods for germination, healthiness and purity analysis, vitality raising methods, and methods to increase purity in seed raw materials, especially organically produced such. The development of Swedish plant cultivation also needs to be supported by research into a number of other disciplines such as crop nutrition, plant protection, soil conservation, mechanical engineering/digitalisation and automation. 

Grain quality

If grain production and further processing is to be profitable, the grain must meet the quality requirements demanded. Grain should have the right protein content and protein quality, starch content, falling number, kernel size etc. Added to which, minimising the content of undesired substances such as cadmium and mycotoxins is of the utmost importance and that subsequent processing steps do not generate acrylamide or other toxic substances. Satisfying these requirements requires knowledge about the impact of cultivation techniques on grain quality, types with the right qualities plus precise and inexpensive methods that enable different substances in the grain to be measured.

Feed development

Our general goal is for Swedish animal products production to be able to grow with profitability. Development that leads to increased productivity within all livestock is required for this. Necessary productivity increases require effective feed utilisation and development of animal health, not least the sustainability of the breeding mothers. Any such productivity increases must not mean a greater negative impact on the surrounding environment.

Ahead of this year's call for proposals, we are particularly interested in projects that can give increased production and use of domestic feed raw materials, including roughage. A very urgent issue is to find good methionine sources for organic feed for poultry. We also see a clear need to increase knowledge about how grain should be evaluated as feed for different livestock. In the case of roughage, it is important to increase knowledge about the evaluation of and differences between different roughage in terms of fibre and protein.  The toxin problematic in feed oats in particular, is another prioritised area. Due to the risks of mycotoxins, the use of oats as a feed commodity has sharply reduced in recent years. However, as oats have a very good amino acid balance, they have a high feed value.

Contact us

Pär-Johan Lööf

Agriculture and Machinery
Tel: + 46 10 556 11 68